Many kids are interested in sports. Joining a sports team is a great way for kids to get exercise and make friends, but sports are often an expensive hobby. If you are looking for a way to support your special needs child's interest in sports without maxing out your wallet, use these five tips from McRory Pediatric Services, Inc.
Help Your Kids Practice
Getting out in the yard and helping your child train for his or her sports team is the best way to support a sports interest without spending a lot of money. Not only will you get in extra exercise, but you also have an opportunity to bond with your child. Make sure you have plenty of comfortable workout clothes. You don't have to sacrifice style for comfort anymore because there are numerous types of workout clothes to choose from. Some items you might want to look for include:
• Running shoes
Focus On One or Two Sports
One study cited in the Los Angeles Times shows that 38% of children participate in at least one sporting activity. Many of these kids are involved in more than one sporting event, and the cost associated with each of these activities adds up quickly. Encourage your child to focus on one or two events to minimize costs.
Attend a Sporting Event
If your special needs child has a favorite sports team, take a trip to see a live event nearby. For example, you can make plans to see a live baseball game. You can find many sites that offer discounted tickets online. Filter the results by the seat, date, and price range so that you can find something that meets your needs and fits your budget. Many ticket sellers have 360-degree virtual seating charts so that you can see exactly where you will be sitting when you purchase tickets.
You can also save money on a sports event by using a third-party website to buy cheap hotel rooms or airfare. Driving to the event instead of flying can also help you save money, and you can rent a room on Airbnb if you don't want to stay in a hotel.
Teach Your Child About Healthy Competition
Big Life Journal notes that healthy competition is a major part of sports, and winning is only one element. Make sure your kids understand that the true value of sports comes from teamwork and friendships. They need to learn how to accept losses gracefully and work to improve their skills if they want to win in the future.
Buy Discounted Gear
Having the right gear is important for being successful in any type of sport, but you don't have to pay full price or buy only name-brand gear. You can often find off-brand gear that is just as effective as name-brand equipment. If you need to buy expensive gear for any reason, try to purchase it during the off-season to save money. Because there are many sales on gear when the season is out, you can find great deals. You can use review websites to comparison shop so you can find the best deals on highly-rated products.
If you have special needs kids who love sports, it's important for you to support their interests. However, there is no reason for you to blow your entire budget on sports-related costs. Using these tips can help you save money while helping your kids reap the many benefits of sports.
Jason Kenner of onparparent.com